“The Strange Tale of Cletus Tanner”

“I would’na go too close to that tha’ pond if’n I wuz you!”.

“Why not, is it deep? Is that why you have the danger sign?”

“Deepa’n ya’ thunk, but tha ain’t tha’ reasun’


“Yup, ma’ brother Cletus dun gone messin’in there, an’ he wuz ne’er seen again!”


“Uh’uh, tha’rs a thing in tha’ dun ate’ im!”

“A thing ate him?”

“Yep sure did! That or it might be Cletus’, we ain’t none too sure either way”

OK when I left you two weeks ago I was just about ready to “Quickshade” my pond, but before I could do that there were a couple of outstanding jobs that needed doing first. The main one being the sculpting of the monster that resides in said pond (be it “Cletus Tanner” or not! I’ll let you decide), so some “Greestuff” was mixed up and using my “comb” technique again I rolled out some worm like tentacles draping them over the pond and various other stuff to get the shapes I wanted. A teardrop shape was then made and I basically created the simple head as I went along, next day I added a wristwatch to one of the tentacles and a baseball cap to the head. I undercoated these in plum and highlighted them in the same mixed with lupin, some orange highlights on the head, a gold watch and red and white cap and he was done.

I also made a sign out of a matchstick and a coffee stirrer, and printed out another sign this time for the side of the car battery. Then everything was given a coat of “Quckshade strong tone”. Once dry more chestnut and orange was stippled over the rusty bits, I then gave all the stonework another light dry-brushing with a very light grey (mid grey and white) then painted up the edges of the base in chocolate, khaki and coffee to match the bases on my figures. As usual this was then followed with patches of scenic green that were flocked in summer mix hairy grass. The rubberized moss came out next and a few patches of this were superglued here and there. I wanted some plants growing in the actual pond itself so taking the old “dustpan and brush” I hacked a few bristles off (my wife will never notice, I hope!) and painted some of them scenic green, some leather brown, some bronze green and a few khaki. I mixed and matched these up, the ends of these were then superglued together and these bunches were pushed into blobs of greenstuff. These were then glued into the pool and then it went out for a spray coat of matt varnish (the head and tentacles were not matt varnished as I wanted then to look wet).

Once dry the tentacles were also glued into the bottom of the pond, I didn’t add the head yet as it needed to be at the right height to sit with the top of the water just below his eyes so I measured the height at the inner edge of the pond in relation to the height of the head (hope that makes sense, you’ll see what I mean later on). I also painted the visible inner part of the open drum in a mix of lime and mustard yellow, mixing them roughly in-situ to represent the toxic waste.

Next day once everything was good and dry it was time to add the first layer of “Acrylic Water”, first pleasant surprise is that I doesn’t smell! You don’t need to mix it so it was just a case of cutting the nozzle off of the bottle (there is a cap to cover this between layers), and squirt some into the pond, I added about a 2mm layer and rocked the piece to get the whole base covered. I then dripped a little chocolate brown and khaki paint into this and swirled it about with the back of a brush (I think I did this a bit much as it pigmented the whole lot muddy brown!), I then lest it to dry, now it says that in warm conditions I should take about 24 hours, but mine took 48 hours (and it was blooming warm enough for me!), so to do all the layers was going to take a while (hence the lateness of this post). Anyway eventually I was able to add the second layer, and this one I left mainly clear but swirled a little khaki through it.

Another round of measuring told me I was now at the right height to add the head, so that’s what I did then added another layer of the acrylic and this time I also dropped a couple of blobs of lime green and mustard paint into a pot and then added more of the acrylic to this, then I swirled it all about to mix this them dripped a bit into the pond up by the floating drum. Using a cocktail stick I teased this out into swirls and left it dry. Next day I mixed some more of the paint into some PVA wood glue and leaving a couple of “runs” out to dry these were then glued one dripping out of the floating drum and one down the side of the open drum. More PVA and paint was then mixed up and teased/dripped along these dry lengths to form “runs”. I added a “pool” at the base of the open drum and painted the visible bit under the open lid with more PVA to give it a gloss finish.

The next layer of acrylic was added in the same manner as the last, but with a slightly smaller green painted area, I also added small painted spots of “moss/algae” around the outside of the pond in sap green/khaki and olive green mix in-situ (should really have done this before I started adding the acrylic!). When it came to adding the next layer I just painted a little of the lime green and mustard around where the “run” landed in the pool, then added yet another layer of acrylic (you can see why this has taken so long now can’t you!). The last two layers of acrylic over the next couple of days and once this was finally dry I added a few “ripples” around the head, tentacles and drum by dipping the point of a brush handle into some PVA wood glue and gently “drawing” them on. And it was finished (thank the lord!).

Looking at the finished piece, I have to say I’m very happy with the end result, it looks just like I had imagined it, but by GOD it was a lot of messing!! I do like the idea of familiar things being left over after society goes to hell in a handcart, the local woods where I occasionally take the dogs for a walk was a Victorian amusement park and there are still some of the fountains and pools there in an overgrown state to be seen as you walk around, and this was part of the inspiration for poor Cletus’s resting place. I’ll finish this post with a thank you to Dave Stone for coming up with the idea of “The Summer of Scenery Challenge”, it was just kick up the arse I needed to get this done, I think however if we do this again next year I might just stick a few plastic trees to a wooden base!

Till next time, stay safe and cheers Roger.

This entry was posted in 28mm fantasy, 28mm sci-fi, fantasy, Into the Wasteland, Scenery, sci-fi, Summer Scenery Challenge and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

26 Responses to “The Strange Tale of Cletus Tanner”

  1. Dave Stone says:

    Wonderful piece of scenery Roger, glad I could be of assistance to getting this idea done, and if the event does go on next year (probably will) all scenery counts ! LOL

    • Thanks Dave, I have all these ideas in my head of things it would be cool to build, but probably only one in ten ever actually makes it to reality! 😁

      If it’s on again next year (and I know we still have anther month to go this year yet!!), I’ll be in, hopefully I’ll have re-stocked on coffee stirrers by then. 😉

      Cheers Roger.

  2. Just stunning stuff, Roger, and probably a Top Ten contender, if we’re going to do that again this year? 😉

    • Thanks Simon, It turned out to be more work than i originally envisioned, but I am rather pleased with it now, especially as I’d never consider scenery to be my “thing”.

      As things stand, I imagine we will be doing the “top ten” thing, 😉

      And I’d be very disappointed if this didn’t make the cut!

      Cheers Roger.

  3. borderguy190 says:

    Fantastic terrain Roger! Poor ole’ Cletus, but he shoulda heeded the warnings. Well done!

  4. Mut says:

    Excellent work, and with so many different materials! The resin looks great and as usual your sculpting is top-notch.

    • Thanks Matt, the resin was a bit of a pain to be honest as you could only add a layer about 2/3mm think each time, so frustrating when you have my level of impatience! the figure sculpting was pretty basic if I honest.

      Cheers Roger.

  5. Inspired Roger, just absolutely inspired! I’m in awe. Loved all the little details, and the descriptions of how you achieved this. This is a pure tutorial in weathering perfection. 👏👏👏👏👏👏👏👏👏

    • Thanks mark, high praise indeed, it was a bit of a set back when i discovered that I’d given my pot of “rust” coloured paint to Myles and it was now 150 miles away! Luckily “Chestnut” is a very similar colour and was able to “fill in” for me. I even used a technique I stole from you and wrapped some “Blutack” (I think you call it postertack) around the floating barrels lower half when I matt varnished the piece, so it would remain glossy. Good tip that!

      Cheers Roger.

  6. Michael Awdry says:

    I just love this Roger! Everything compliments each other perfectly and with the added tale of poor old Cletus to boot! An absolute joy.

    • Thanks you Michael, from a master in the narrative scenic item like yourself I will take that with pride! your pieces have been such an inspiration I felt I had to up my game a bit (a lot!).

      Cheers Roger.

  7. Pete S/ SP says:

    That is great- will make a fine piece for a post- apoc village centre.



  8. Thanks Pete, I suppose it would, I envisioned it around the back of a store on in the middle of a wood myself, but yes I can see what you mean.

    Cheers Roger.

  9. Roger, that is just brilliant! 🙂 No need to say more! Every wasteland should have a pond like that!

  10. Love it Roger. That looks so cool.

    • Thanks Maenoferren, it was a lot of work for what it is really, but it was more of a “see if can do it” project than a simple bit of scenery in the end. It’s not like I had a lot else to do.😄

      Cheers Roger.

  11. angrypiper says:

    I’m just seeing this now (sorry). Fantastic work, Roger. I have been struggling with figuring out what I’m going to use for water texture, and Vallejo seems to be the way to go. I’m going to follow your approach for my scum-pool (or whatever it is supposed to be), because if it looks half as good as this, I’ll be happy indeed.

    • Thanks Keith, I can’t recommend the Vallejo water highly enough, I got mine from Amazon because I couldn’t get out to a model shop in person to look or compare stuff, but I would defiantly use it again (actually I have loads left!), Its great that you don’t have to mix it (though if you are adding a decent amount of paint it’s a good idea to mix this up separately then add this where you want it in spots and drag it out with a toothpick to form the swirls and such). Also only add thin layers at a time or it can “crack” and takes ages to dry, I was leaving 24hrs at least between layers. Best of all it doesn’t smell at all unlike resin that stinks!

      Cheers Roger.

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  13. Azazel says:

    I think something may have gone slightly wrong with the Hot Tub….

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